#4 ... One is really heavy, the other is a little lighter.
August 25, 2015 1:47 PM   Subscribe

And the winner of the Best Joke at the 2015 Endinburgh Fringe Festival is... (with runners-up #2 - #10, featuring Kim&Kanye, a desert island, dreams, Jesus, tapas and a clown divorce)
posted by oneswellfoop (65 comments total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
 
hippo/Zippo FTW
posted by chavenet at 1:57 PM on August 25, 2015 [25 favorites]


In Edinburgh at the moment. The tapas joke is doing the rounds, and has already been modified to include the wine...

The clown divorce joke was spotted in London earlier this year, but was about a trifle magnate and his wife.
posted by Devonian at 2:00 PM on August 25, 2015 [4 favorites]


Masai Graham was robbed!
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 2:00 PM on August 25, 2015 [5 favorites]


That dreams joke was on tumblr a few months ago.
posted by infinitewindow at 2:09 PM on August 25, 2015


Seriously, number four is a fucking classic.
posted by Etrigan at 2:16 PM on August 25, 2015 [5 favorites]


Can someone explain #3: "Surely every car is a people carrier?"? I google "people carrier" and I guess it's a term for minivan but that can't be the joke can it?
posted by griphus at 2:16 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


Had to admit I did lol at the Tom Perry / Red Sky at night one
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 2:19 PM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


Can someone explain #3: "Surely every car is a people carrier?"? I google "people carrier" and I guess it's a term for minivan but that can't be the joke can it?

Yeah, what's the matter? 'Surely every car is a minivan?' is hilarious.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 2:20 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


Minivans are called 'People Carriers' in the UK. Surely it's not that far a stretch?
posted by Brockles at 2:24 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


A bunch of mardy British comedians of my acquaintance are complaining that this list is lazy clickbait journalism and that the jokes are awful and also at least half recycled. They are debating who is lazier, the comedians deploying recycled puns or the journalists making lists of them.

I suspect those complaining have all seen far too many comedy sets at this point.
posted by emilyw at 2:26 PM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


I just saw my, um ... thirty-ninth Fringe show, if anyone else is in town and wants recommendations. Living in Edinburgh has its perks. (The comedy shows aren't my main thing, though, although I've gone to a few.)

Devonian, any shows you'd recommend? Of any type.
posted by kyrademon at 2:26 PM on August 25, 2015


#4 FTW

The hansfree joke was on some other comedian's facebook a few months ago, but I have no idea how long Walsh has been touring with it, so it could of course be "borrowed" by the facebook guy... (but the actual pun feels obvious enough that it cannot possibly be new, or?).

Can someone explain #3: "Surely every car is a people carrier?"?

UK speak for minivan. Guess it might work in some larger context about names that aren't that helpful, but doesn't make much sense as a stand-alone joke (which on the other hand isn't that unusual for "best of fringe" jokes).
posted by effbot at 2:29 PM on August 25, 2015


Wait so is it the whole point that winners and runners up for "best joke" are all groaningly crappy puns? Like, it's a campy send-up of the whole idea of jokes, right?
posted by shmegegge at 2:31 PM on August 25, 2015 [6 favorites]


Jokes ranked.
Opinions differ.
Fights break out.
No news at 11.
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:32 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


What's #8 mean? Gloves?
posted by graventy at 2:35 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


So a "people carrier" is the name for a minivan, but "people carrier" could also be the name of anything that carries people such as a car that is not a minivan. So when someone says "people carrier" in reference to a minivan, the comedian thinks it is humorous because to someone interpreting "people carrier" literally they (the "people carrier"-referencers) are being ambiguous about what sort of vehicle they are referring to even though they think they are being quite specific. Do I have that right?
posted by griphus at 2:35 PM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


Not sure. It's not in the Constitution.
posted by bz at 2:37 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


> "What's #8 mean? Gloves?"

Think "keeper" in the sense of "goalie".
posted by kyrademon at 2:37 PM on August 25, 2015 [5 favorites]


Every Volkswagen is a people carrier, is it not?

You know who else had a Volkswagen?
posted by I-baLL at 2:38 PM on August 25, 2015 [4 favorites]


What's #8 mean? Gloves?

Keeper is short for goalkeeper. They wear large gloves.
posted by Fnarf at 2:38 PM on August 25, 2015




Kyrademon - I've only been to a couple of literary events. I normally try to avoid Edinburgh during the Fringe (MIMES! MIMES! REVERSE! REVERSE!) but for various reasons couldn't manage that this year so have just trolled along to stuff which friends are doing. So I can't really recommend much.

I probably will be going to Am I Dead Yet? at the Traverse, as I met the two guys doing it and suspect it'll be rather good.
posted by Devonian at 2:47 PM on August 25, 2015


These two:

“If I could take just one thing to a desert island I probably wouldn’t go.”

"They’re always telling me to live my dreams. But I don’t want to be naked in an exam I haven’t revised for...”

could be in Stephen Wright or Mitch Hedberg routines. Quality stuff
posted by Hoopo at 2:49 PM on August 25, 2015 [6 favorites]


I'm still angry that the "Arts + Ents" slideshow at the bottom of the page had no ents in it.
posted by moonmilk at 2:52 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


From my American viewpoint "keeper" and "large gloves" translated to "beekeeper", so it was still worth a giggle to me.
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:52 PM on August 25, 2015 [4 favorites]


Not sure. It's not in the Constitution.

Yes, but the UK Constitution is famously a derived body of law and tradition, not an explicit charter. This allows for the principle of UK governance that a Parliament may not be bound by the passage of acts by an earlier Parliament. This was established in the Nulla fullonum, radio codicil of the Magna Carta.
posted by infinitewindow at 2:53 PM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


A bunch of mardy British comedians of my acquaintance are complaining that this list is lazy clickbait journalism and that the jokes are awful and also at least half recycled. They are debating who is lazier, the comedians deploying recycled puns or the journalists making lists of them.

They speak the truth.
posted by Bwithh at 3:05 PM on August 25, 2015


WTF? as in Was that funny? Nope.
posted by njohnson23 at 3:06 PM on August 25, 2015


terrible puns are the best jokes, truly. I personally can't stop.
posted by freecellwizard at 3:08 PM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


The Blue Skies at Night joke reminded me of what I've said to anybody asking me why I moved to within a few miles of California's last Nuclear Power plant (at the confidence-building location of 'Diablo Canyon')...

"Red skies at night, sailors delight. Green skies at night, Nuclear Engineers call you office."
posted by oneswellfoop at 3:11 PM on August 25, 2015


Red skies at night, shepherd's delight. Red sky in the morning, three minute warning.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 3:30 PM on August 25, 2015 [4 favorites]


WTF? as in Was that funny? Nope.
THEN LET'S SEE YOU DO BETTER.
posted by oneswellfoop at 3:41 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


“If I could take just one thing to a desert island I probably wouldn’t go.”
Yes I can definitely hear Mitch Hedberg doing that, right down to the pitch, accent, tempo and rhythm.
posted by Wolfdog at 3:46 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


THEN LET'S SEE YOU DO BETTER.

Q: What does it mean when the bass player is drooling out of both sides of his mouth?

A: The stage is level.
posted by Fnarf at 3:50 PM on August 25, 2015 [14 favorites]


I followed the 25 best jokes of all time link, and

"Dave drowned. So at the funeral we got him a wreath in the shape of a lifebelt. Well, it's what he would have wanted." - Gary Delaney (2010)

It's been a long time since a joke made me snot myself at work.
posted by Mooski at 3:53 PM on August 25, 2015 [25 favorites]


If Neptune is the God of the Sea; is Uranus the God of Plumbing?
posted by indianbadger1 at 3:59 PM on August 25, 2015


Strictly speaking, has there ever been an exam in which it was explicitly stated that you couldn't be naked when you took it?

asking for a friend
posted by Halloween Jack at 4:01 PM on August 25, 2015


Can someone explain the jokes the winner thought were "funnier":

While his line won the top prize, he believes there are funnier jokes in his show. These include: “My cat is recovering from a massive stroke” and “Green men make me cross”.

So, is the first one just "ha ha, I hit my cat"? And what on earth is the second one referring to?

Also, I'm a bit surprised how bad these jokes are, considering that most of my favorite comedians started at the Edinburgh Fringe...

("she's a keeper" was pretty good though.)
posted by mmoncur at 4:08 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


The "green men make me cross" bit refers to a street crossing sign that has a green man for "Go" instead of a hand.
posted by friendlyjuan at 4:10 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


stroking your cat = petting your cat
posted by LobsterMitten at 4:11 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


From my American viewpoint "keeper" and "large gloves" translated to "beekeeper", so it was still worth a giggle to me.

Same here, but the cat and people-carrier jokes left me blank.

A bunch of mardy British comedians of my acquaintance are complaining...

Well, at least I learned a new word.
posted by psoas at 4:18 PM on August 25, 2015


Puns apparently do not translate well across national boundaries ...
posted by kyrademon at 4:19 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


a green man for "Go"

I thought "green men make me cross" had something to do with the pagan symbol of the Green Man and the influence of Christianity and maybe I was overthinking it a little.
posted by moonmilk at 4:50 PM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


Honestly the inclusion of the super lazy Kim & Kanye joke at #2 makes the rest of the list look pretty good in comparison. That wouldn't even be the second most upvoted joke in a Reddit thread.
posted by jason_steakums at 5:05 PM on August 25, 2015 [6 favorites]


Who's bigger? Mr. Bigger, or Mr. Bigger's baby?
Mr. Bigger's baby is a little Bigger.
posted by jenkinsEar at 5:39 PM on August 25, 2015 [6 favorites]


I'm definitely a #5 guy, but #7 is good too. I can see the Mitch Hedberg/Stephen Wright angle, but I read them in more of a Norm Macdonald way.
posted by uosuaq at 6:51 PM on August 25, 2015


The clown divorce joke was spotted in London earlier this year, but was about a trifle magnate and his wife.

I was going to cite Fry and Laurie but these puns go way back.
posted by knuckle tattoos at 6:55 PM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


Two morons were sitting on a bridge - one was big and one was little. One of them fell off, which one was it?

The big one. The other was a little more on.
posted by bendy at 7:12 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


What's #8 mean? Gloves?
Keeper is short for wicket-keeper - they have really big gloves.
posted by unliteral at 7:58 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


Think "keeper" in the sense of "goalie".

Oh. I thought the gloves implied a pith helmet with netting draped over it.
posted by StickyCarpet at 10:16 PM on August 25, 2015


"Where do cats go when they die? Purrgatory." Is certainly better than his cat pun because although the actual joke is changed slightly you can make it work in pretty much any Romance Language.
posted by mcrandello at 11:59 PM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


My friend Chris Hogg was doing the 'Keeper' gag as part of his stand-up set a few years ago - with the addition of a second line "& then I saw her at the zoo, cleaning out the elephants, and I thought 'She's definitely a keeper'"
posted by DanCall at 1:51 AM on August 26, 2015 [4 favorites]


The problem is that these comedians are not punsmiths generally.
The best jokes are much more complicated and part of a deliberately crafted hour long routine. Pulling out a pun here or there won't represent them well, but it's the only bit of the show that you can put in print and have it make sense.

Tom Parry [“Red sky at night. Shepherd’s delight. Blue sky at night. Day.”] particularly (better known as one third of Pappy's, and formerly one fourth of Pappy's Fun Club) is a comedian that if you wrote down his show it would look absolutely dire. But it's all in the performance. Pulling out a one liner doesn't do it justice.

Simon Munnery ["Clowns divorce. Custardy battle"] does have a lot of one liners, but usually presented through an over the top character and often deliberately bad.

If you want a torrent of one-liners Tim Vine is your man, and he's normally represented on these lists somewhere. I think they decided to stop picking his because he kept winning this "award"
posted by Just this guy, y'know at 3:24 AM on August 26, 2015 [2 favorites]


I enjoy puns.

These are awful, without exception.
posted by ShutterBun at 6:49 AM on August 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


I just saw my, um ... thirty-ninth Fringe show

Ah. Okay, I get it now. The Fringe Festival has become a hopelessly no longer with it middle aged guy. So it goes for the Dad jokes. Seriously, repeat any of those punch lines and stick a "Coral" at the end and it would be much, much funnier.
posted by Naberius at 6:54 AM on August 26, 2015 [2 favorites]


IT'S A LITTLE LIGHTER, CORAL
posted by brokkr at 7:28 AM on August 26, 2015 [7 favorites]


See!
posted by Naberius at 8:16 AM on August 26, 2015




I LOLed. Not really.
posted by Splunge at 9:00 AM on August 26, 2015


“If I could take just one thing to a desert island I probably wouldn’t go.”

This reminds me of a Mark Watson classic: "If someone said to me, 'You have to give up either food or sex for one year', I'd say 'No I don't'."
posted by hoist with his own pet aardvark at 12:40 PM on August 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


> "The Fringe Festival has become a hopelessly no longer with it middle aged guy. So it goes for the Dad jokes."

There are 3,500 shows at the Fringe.

I don't think you should base your view of it on a kind of dumb award.
posted by kyrademon at 12:44 PM on August 26, 2015 [2 favorites]


Tough crowd! I enjoyed most of these. Liked the zippo/hippo and the keeper on the best.

(beekeeper? lol. that's low on the list of possible "keeper" references I can think of. goalkeeper of course. sweeper keeper. zookeeper. brother's keeper. trapper keeper! )
posted by JenMarie at 1:31 PM on August 26, 2015


Also, as the picture showing the winner with the trophy shows, it's 'a kind of a dumb award' sponsored by what I have heard is 'a kind of a dumb TV channel' (well, it does have the more-than-kind-of-dumb name "Dave"). Still, I thought it was worth posting here, because I LIKE DUMB JOKES. (Yet I have never been a Dad, as DNA tests have proven)
posted by oneswellfoop at 1:35 PM on August 26, 2015 [2 favorites]


Also worth dropping here, this collection of "Short Clean Jokes" that has been circulating in Tumblr since April (so they have to be good something, right?)

16. Sometimes I tuck my knees into my chest and lean forward. That’s just how I roll.
posted by oneswellfoop at 3:12 PM on August 26, 2015 [2 favorites]


For a more contemporary one-liner artist, I like Portland's Tim Hammer.
posted by msalt at 5:37 PM on August 26, 2015


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